Load and Capacity Management: Boost Your Productivity

Women assembling keyboards

In one of my first professional experiences, at the end of the 80s, I was in charge of the methods team at an industrial site. Our team included specialists in time studies, who had applied MTM (Methods Time Measurement) methods to best evaluate routings. In particular, these routings were used to define productivity targets. We … Read more

Deterministic to Stochastic Models in Demand-Driven Planning

Casting Dice from a Hand

Our companies operate according to plans. We draw up forecasts, draw up budgets, formalize a production program, and allocate our resources to execute this plan. MRP2 logic is firmly rooted in this principle: business plan, S&OP, master production schedule, capacity and bottleneck network, everything follows and cascades in a hierarchical and deterministic manner, with plans … Read more

Unlocking Supply Chain Decision-Making Secrets

Train tracks leading to a warehouse

At our French user conference in June 2023, our partner DFYA reminded us that we’re constantly making a huge number of decisions. One figure put forward is 35,000 decisions per day for an adult human. If you do an Internet search on the number of decisions per day, Google will indeed give you 35,000. However, the … Read more

Collaboration & Pull Flow: Long Lead Times in Supply Chain

Tanker ship sailing through a digital ocean

Implicitly, when we think to pull flow, Kanban, for example, we think of short lead time. We trigger the next supply to renew consumption, so this implies a rapid reaction time, doesn’t it? On the other hand, for components with long lead times – say, for example, an item with a replenishment lead time of … Read more

Fun & Collaboration: Power in Supply Chain Transformations

Seven people sitting on the floor Conversing & Laughing

“Transformation” is the buzzword of the moment. “Digital” transformation, “Supply Chain” transformation, “Demand Driven” transformation, “Demand Driven Digital Supply Chain” transformation – let’s go for it!… ASCM is even announcing a new APICS CTSC training and certification course: Certified in Transformation for Supply Chain CTSC Exam Content Manual (ascm.org). For supply chain leaders, the ability to … Read more

What is the right S&OP Frequency?

Timpani Drum

In the plants I worked in, I started orchestrating S&OP processes in the late 80s/early 90s. I always considered that it should be a monthly process – without necessarily asking too many questions. In a factory, it’s natural to have reviews for each shift, daily, weekly, and monthly. A yearly budget, possibly a quarterly review. … Read more

Why use an averaged forecast?

Ball on top of hill

To make use of forecasts in a conventional MRP system, you generate supply orders, called planned orders, that align perfectly with the timing of these forecasts. The example below is a consumer item – a drink. Sales of this item are driven by seasonality and promotions. Understanding Seasonality and Promotions When analyzing the sales of … Read more

Supply Chain Transformation: Top-down or Bottom-up?

Choosing to go up or down?

The need to make manufacturing and distribution operations more agile and resilient is no longer in question. How to do it is another matter. In global companies, ambitious transformation projects are emerging, often with two opposing approaches. Or it is a group program, initiated by the general management, led by a central team, with a … Read more

Flow and quality batches: innocent, suspect, and guilty

Super villains being processed

In a factory, the relationship between Supply Chain and Quality teams can be tumultuous… Quality hold manufacturing batches – put on hold for inspection or rework – queues on key test equipment, release times, all this generates waiting, delays, when we are already in a hurry… Everyone agrees we must ensure that we deliver defect-free … Read more

Minimum Orders | The Hidden Side of Stocks

Minimum defined in the dictionary

Do you know how minimum orders, minimum production releases, and transfer batches affect your distribution network? As a supply chain professional, it’s essential to understand the impact of lot sizes on your inventory, lead times, and ability to deliver to your customers. In this article, we’ll explore how to visualize the impact and adapt to … Read more

Projecting Inventories in Times of Uncertainty: How to Optimize Your Strategy

Question mark in blocks

We know that the future is uncertain. Actual demand will differ from forecasts. Supplies and production will be subject to uncertainty. Therefore, projecting inventory carries significant uncertainty – as we described in this article, projected inventory is an illusion. In today’s uncertain business environment, projecting inventory is a challenging task. While Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) … Read more